Game Freak has revealed that Pokémon Sword & Shield is getting two expansion passes, adding over 200 existing Pokémon to the game and two new Legendary monsters (via Nintendo).
These two expansion passes are titled, “The Isle of Armor,” and “The Crown Tundra.” The former will launch first in June 2020, whereas the latter is pitching towards a fall 2020 window, but both passes will cost $29.99 individually. There’s a lot to cover, so let’s get down to business.
The Isle of Armor is an island near the Galar region that boasts beautiful beaches, woodlands, caverns, dunes, and marshlands. Because it’s isolated from the environments of Galar, Game Freak revealed that there will be non-native Pokémon for players to discover on the island. The new story will take the player to the famous dojo, wherein Pokémon trainer Mustard will take them under his wing. Once Mustard is impressed with the player’s progress, he will give them Kubfu, the new Legendary Pokémon. As a Fighting type Pokémon, Kubfu will evolve into Urshifu, who possesses two battle styles. One is the devastating Single-Strike style, which is Fighting and Dark type. The other is the relentless Rapid-Strike style, which is Fighting and Water type.
Urshifu has a unique Gigantamax form with exclusive G-Max moves according to the evolution Kubfu takes. Also, as players grow and learn on their apprenticeship with Mustard, they will face competition from new rivals. Pokémon Sword players will encounter Poison type trainer Klara but Pokémon Shield players will meet Psychic type trainer Avery. Rillaboom, Cinderace, and Inteleon get new Gigantamax forms on the Isle of Armor, and there are even more gameplay enhancements to welcome new players and synthesise eight Generations of games. Apricorns will return, Tutor Moves with all-new moves are included, and there’s the Exp. Charm that increases the experience earned from each encounter.
The Crown Tundra’s central theme is that of exploration. On their travels, the player will again find Pokémon that are not in Galar, and the snowstorms hide a mysterious temple and an unnatural tree. A trainer will invite the player to their expedition team, and there will be co-op adventures to be had in new underground environments. The dens that Dynamax Pokémon rule over will be accessible, and Game Freak hinted that Legendaries from past Generations could be lurking in the shadows. Also shown in the Direct were what looks to be Galarian Articuno, Moltres, and Zapdos, but the Crown Tundra has its own unique Legendary for players to meet. Calyrex is a Psychic and Grass type Pokémon that once ruled over the Crown Tundra, and is mythologised for its beauty and grace.
Game Freak mentioned that there will be free updates for Pokémon Sword & Shield that will coincide with the releases of expansion passes. These will allow those who don’t purchase the passes to get the new and never-before-seen Pokémon featured in The Isle of Armor and in The Crown Tundra through trades.
The Isle of Armor and in The Crown Tundra will launch in June 2020 and fall 2020 for Pokémon Sword & Shield on the Nintendo Switch. Watch the trailer below.